It is impossible to say who the greatest 100 guitarists are, for the simple fact that it is just a matter of opinion; read on…

Rock, Blues, Flamenco, Bluegrass?

Great All Purpose Guitar

You might like blues, I might like rock, and our friend might like Flamenco guitar.
So, here is an evolving list of the greatest 100 guitarists, in the opinion of our staff and some readers. Keep in mind that this is not only based on technical ability, but also the ability to make music.

It is one thing to play like a machine gun, or do incredible runs or amazing finger style acrobatics, but if it does not make music, it is just acrobatics, in our opinion! If you want to be in our list of the greatest 100 guitarists, you have to have it all!

These are some of the most famous guitarists of all time. Of course, there are many, many top guitarists not on this list! Maybe you? Sometimes the genre, or style is not an exact fit, and some players could be in several groups.

Who are the greatest 100 guitarists?
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100 Best Guitarists

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Blues

  • Buddy Guy
  • BB King
  • Stevie Ray Vaughan
  • Albert Lee
  • John Lee Hooker
  • Robert Johnson
  • Eric Clapton
  • Freddie King
  • Muddy Waters
  • Albert King
  • Peter Green

Rock

  • Jimi Hendrix
  • Jeff Beck
  • Jimmy Page
  • John Cippolina
  • Carlos Santana
  • Eric Johnson
  • Stephen Stills
  • Neil Young
  • Justin Hayward
  • David Gilmour
  • Steve Gaines
  • Steve Winwood
  • Pete Townsend
  • Steve Miller
  • Jerry Garcia
  • Chuck Berry
  • George Harrison
  • Albert Lea
  • Keith Richards
  • John Mayer
  • Joe Walsh
  • The Edge
  • Mark Knopfler
  • Dick Dale
  • John Fogerty
  • Trey Anastasio
  • Robbie Robertson
  • John Frusciante

Finger style

  • Merle Travis
  • Mississippi John Hurt
  • Leo Kottke
  • Jorma Kaukonen

Flatpicking

  • Doc Watson
  • Tony Rice
  • Dan Crary
  • Norman Blake
  • Steve Kaufman
  • Brian Sutton
  • Mark Cosgrove
  • Clarence White

Slide guitar

  • Duane Allman
  • Johnny Winter
  • Ry Cooder
  • Warren Haynes
  • Derek Trucks

Country

  • Jerry Reed
  • Chet Atkins
  • Danny Gatton
  • Vince Gill

Metal

  • Steve Vai
  • Van Halen
  • Joe Satriani
  • Kirk Hammett

Celtic

  • John Doyle
  • Tony McManus

Spanish

  • Andre Segovia

Classical

  • John Williams

Folk Rock

  • Richard Thompson
  • Bert Jansch

Jazz

  • Les Paul
  • Django Reinhart

Recommended Guitar Brands

IbanezOvation
TaylorFender
EpiphoneMartin
TakamineGuild
GibsonWashburn

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